“A new commandment I give to you, that you love one another: just as I have loved you, you also are to love one another. By this all people will know that you are my disciples, if you have love for one another.”John 13:34-35 ESV
By this all people will know that you are my disciples: that you follow man made traditions? That you observe times, days and seasons? That you are religious hypocrites? No. That you love one another, just like Jesus loves you.
How does Jesus love you? I think if we fully understood that, we would see a different expression of faith other than mere lip service on a Sunday morning. We would see lives transformed, and lives transforming other lives, if we fully understood the Gospel.
What is God asking you to do? What is God asking me to do? To become just like Him, in regards to love. How do we do that? First, we have to recognize where we fall short. Without honesty, there is no room for repentance. What is repentance? Changing the way we think and act.
Religion focuses on changing outward actions so that we appear righteous. Faith focuses on changing our hearts so that we become righteous. If your heart changes, how you think will change. If how you think changes, how you act will change. Transformation starts in the heart and works its way outward.
There’s only one proven way to change your heart. Open it up to God and surrender to His process. The only way I know how to do that is through prayer. God is the Great Physician. He’s also a great heart surgeon and neurosurgeon. He gets to the heart of the matter instantly, where we fear to even admit our need.
What’s your next step? What does God want you to do? He knows. For each one of us, He knows exactly what our next step of obedience by faith is. Do you know? Have you asked Him? Are you willing? Are you ready?
For me, it is total surrender to the will of God. That’s easy to say, but must be lived out daily. I can’t pick myself up off the altar of sacrifice and say I’m taking a vacation day to live in the flesh instead of the Spirit.
Don’t get me wrong, we’re saved by faith not by works. But the life we now live, we live by faith in the One who saved us. He becomes the Lord of our lives. We’re no longer in charge. We don’t call the shots. We simply trust, listen and obey. God leads us, by example, by His Word, by inspiration, by His Spirit. The Spirit and the Word are converging in human flesh, the Church.
Prepare for the marriage supper of the Lamb. Where the Bride and the Bridegroom become one flesh.
Prepare your hearts for your King. Prepare to receive Him as Lord and Master. There is freedom in surrender. Hope in humility. None of us measure up. We never could. It is only by grace that we are invited to become one with God. Get rid of your unbelief and pick up your cross, crucifying the lusts of the flesh, daily.
You can’t do it on your own, only the Spirit of God working in you can give you the ability to live a life that pleases God. Without faith, it is impossible to please God. Anything not done in faith is sin.
O Master, where art Thou? Are You in my heart? Are You in my head? It’s enough to believe. Belief births righteous action. Unbelief births sin. And sin gives birth to death. All are under the curse of death until they return to Me.
Lord God, forgive us for our unbelief. Forgive us for being charlatans and hypocrites, play actors who pretend to believe but our hearts are far from you. Convict our hearts of sin so that we can repent and turn to You for healing and restoration. Give us new life. Wash away the old. Bring death to those things that no longer serve You. Let us serve You wholeheartedly, with all that we are, to bring glory to You. Father in Heaven, make it so. Revive our hearts this day. In the Name of Jesus, we pray. Amen and amen.
And the vision of all this has become to you like the words of a book that is sealed. When men give it to one who can read, saying, “Read this,” he says, “I cannot, for it is sealed.” And when they give the book to one who cannot read, saying, “Read this,” he says, “I cannot read.”
And the Lord said: “Because this people draw near with their mouth and honor me with their lips, while their hearts are far from me, and their fear of me is a commandment taught by men, therefore, behold, I will again do wonderful things with this people, with wonder upon wonder; and the wisdom of their wise men shall perish, and the discernment of their discerning men shall be hidden.”Isaiah 29:11-14 ESV